It’s VIRTUAL party time
My first Facebook party: a weeklong journal.
November 20, 2020
One of the newest ways that small businesses are expanding their name and their clientele is through Facebook. Using social media to gain popularity is nothing new — it’s the way social media plays a hand. Last month, I was invited to my first Facebook group, where consults or representatives of the business team up with a host, who can be anyone from a friend who wants to support the business or a complete stranger who is just interested in the products. Together, these entrepreneurs generate interest in their products through infographics, live streams, and even games. The games provided to party members offer a chance to earn rewards and discounts off of items, encouraging them to make a purchase. As a host, I can earn rewards; for a certain amount of money spent, there is a corresponding reward. Being quite the shop-a-holic, I just couldn’t resist trying out this new craze.
Following my mom’s Zyia Active party, I decided to contact the representative who booked her party, Gretchen, to host my own. She has already given me some tips on how to be a very active host to generate maximum excitement. I was given a link almost immediately after booking my party to send out to my friends ahead of time, so they can see what the products are like and what the business is all about. After getting a little bit closer to my party’s start date, she created the Facebook group so I could send out my virtual invites. Gretchen advised that along with the invite, I send a private message to my friends to add some emphasis, which is exactly what I did. She posted a few introductions before we got started, and then I was ready to jump in.
Monday, November 16
Today is one day before my Zyia party officially begins, and so far today, I’ve invited a few more people to the party. As of right now, I have 17 members of the group, but I intend to wrangle in an additional few — the more the merrier. I figure that this is a great time of year to host a party since people are not only shopping for themselves, but for loved ones as we near the holidays. I’ve had trouble keeping my elation contained, so my wishlist has already been made. I suppose there is always the possibility (which is more than likely if I’m being honest) that I’ll add a few more items throughout the week. My representative, Gretchen, already posted one game: “Dress the Hostess.” Each party member is asked to create an outfit using Zyia’s products. After all the entries are in, the host picks a winner whose prize is a gift card for their Zyia order. Let the fun begin!
Tuesday, November 17
To kick off the first day, I decided to wear a pair of my Zyia leggings. I posted an OOTD (“outfit of the day”) picture in the group to let my friends know how pumped I was to get the party started.
Each day corresponds to a type of product that my representative will talk about, and today is leggings and sports bras. Gretchen posted a few fun infographics about a couple different products in these categories. Later in the day, she hosted a live stream to show off some of the products she already owned. I wasn’t able to make it due to some other obligations, but Facebook allows me to watch it anytime after it’s posted. Online shopping can be frustrating with the uncertainty of product quality, so having someone to explain the products — not what type of fabric is used or how to wash it, but how they feel and what they’re like in use — is one of the best pros of these Facebook parties.
One of my favorite kinds of posts, the “This or That” activities, were posted halfway through the day. Each post features pictures of two of the company’s products and the members vote which one they like better. Today, Gretchen centered the post around legging, comparing designs, styles, and fabric.
The last thing Gretchen added to the party was a post asking the members how they knew their host. My friends and family members commented something sweet and personal, and made my day.
Wednesday, November 18
First things first, an infographics about joggers. There were way more kinds of joggers than I remember. If you had asked me before the party, there were just joggers and sweatpants.
While I was eating my late breakfast, I got a notification that Gretchen had posted a new game. The game was Christmas themed, and asked each member what they would bring to the holiday party —- but there was a catch. Each comment had to start with a certain letter of the alphabet. The first comment started with A, the second started with B, the third started with C, and so on until we got to the end of the alphabet. Each comment gave the commenter an entry for free shipping. My favorite comment was “Frogs”.
After a few more posts about joggers, Gretchen ended with a live stream reviewing each kind of jogger she owned.
Thursday, November 19
Thursday is all about tops: jackets, tank tops, t-shirts, and long-sleeved shirts. The activity of the day requires a GIF response to the question “What’s your favorite Christmas movie?” My favorite is “The Grinch”. Gretchen also threw in a few more “This or That” posts throughout the day.
One of the members put in an order and Gretchen posted an enthusiastic thank you, and she continued to do this for all the orders. One of the best parts of the party being on Facebook, is that members are able to participate in the games or do their shopping at any time throughout the day.
Friday, November 20
Gretchen decided to make the last day all about “outfit inspo”, combining many of the items she posted throughout the week into Zyia outfit suggestions. This was my personal favorite since I tend to have trouble deciding what to pair my purchases with sometimes. Instead of resorting to Pinterest like I normally do, I just went to my Facebook party.
Being the last day of the party, there were no more games, but Gretchen still integrated an interactive post at some point today. To find out our reindeer name, we used the first letter of our first name to find the first part and our birth month to find the second part. Each letter of the alphabet corresponded with one word and each birth month corresponded with another word. My Reindeer name was “Cookie Maple”.
She took her last opportunities to promote Zyia by inviting everyone in the group to join her “VIP group”, an everlasting Zyia party, so that the Zyia obsessed can shop any day of the year.
Both my Mom and I have extremely enjoyed the opportunities to book and host Facebook parties, but it’s also fun to just be a party member. I jumped into the hosting game pretty early, after only my first party, and it is not a decision I regret. Trying new things is never easy for me, but I was able to share the experience with dozens of my friends, many of which had never participated in or heard of Facebook parties. I was lucky enough to be their introduction. In the era of online shopping, Facebook parties are a must-try. There are tons of other small businesses that show off their products through Facebook parties, and if they don’t find you, I encourage you to find them.